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Fiji Sun

Opinion

Between The Lines

Between The Lines
July 27
10:11 2018

Replacing Hank Arts

Speculation is mounting over who will succeed Hank Arts in the highest paid but most challenging news media job in Fiji.

Mr Arts resigned as Fiji Times publisher following recent years of tension as he and the newspaper fought and eventually won acquittal on sedition charges.

Mr Arts had brought seven years of internal stability and modernisation following a rapid turnover of expatriate publishers after the Motibhai group acquired the Fiji Times.

Dallas Swinstead and Brian O’Flaherty (both strong international newspaper journalists and publishers) came in turn to work for Motibhai as Fiji Times publisher.

Both left earlier than expected. Motibhai finally turned to Mr Arts, localising the position.

Mr Arts had originally come to Fiji from New Zealand in the 1980s to head Television New Zealand’s team setting up what became the once all powerful Fiji Television.

Mr Arts himself had a successful TVNZ career. But he fell in love with Fiji and came back. He ran a number of companies here before being recruited by Motibhai.

Following his court case acquittal and ending of travel restrictions while on bail Mr Arts apparently decided to give up the top salary and large company house high in Tamavua. His plans, we hear, include more relaxation and less stress.

The question in media circles now is where will the Motibhai group turn to replace Mr Arts in a role that is the highest paid in the local news media? But also comes with plenty of pressure and risk.

New ‘title’

Fiji’s National Federation Party leader, Biman Prasad, has been given a new title by Fairfax (New Zealand) website, Stuff.

The website calls him Opposition Party Leader.

Where’s the audience?

Interesting that what was supposed to be a Q & A session with 2 SODELPA Suva Constituency provisional candidates did not happen.

Not many people turned up.

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